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Attendance — GRCHS

School attendance is compulsory by Michigan law. Grand Rapids Christian School is responsible to keep complete attendance records. Regular school attendance is extremely important and essential for successful school progress. 

Our attendance policy encourages punctuality and regular attendance in all classes. Our school is set up to provide students with certain freedoms in their learning environment. However, habitual attendance infractions will result in the loss of those school privileges. Attendance is very important for these reasons:

  1. Excessive absence is detrimental to the learning process and disruptive to the student’s education.
  2. The classroom is a setting where spiritual, intellectual, and interpersonal exchanges take place, therefore, it is very important to be present for these learning experiences. 
  3. It is important to develop good work habits including punctuality and good attendance. These skills will prepare students for higher education and lifetime work. 
  4. God calls us to use our time wisely and be respectful to our teachers and classmates. 

Attendance Procedures for Parents and Students

  1. Attendance will be taken and recorded at the start of every period. 
  2. Students that arrive at school after the bell rings, must sign-in in the office. 
  3. If students need to leave for any reason, they must have parent communication with the attendance supervisor and sign out with her/him in the main office. Students who do not have parental permission will be held at school until parents are contacted to give permission for leaving.
  4. If a student leaves campus without signing out, it will result in school consequences including loss of school privileges, possible detention, and parent communication. See restricted campus policy. 
  5. Attendance is the student’s responsibility. If a student needs to miss class for illness and/or appointments, the parent/guardian should contact the attendance supervisor by phone call or email before the start of the school day. Absences not excused within 24 hours may be treated as unexcused absences. 
  6. The attendance line (616.574.5521) is available 24 hours a day. Parents can report absences via phone, email (awierenga@grcs.org), or ParentVue. 
  7. If a student has health care provider appointments during the day, scheduling those, whenever possible, during a student’s responsibility period or during lunch break, will limit the academic impact of the absence.
  8. Parents will receive daily notifications via phone about unexcused absences. 
  9. Parents are urged to check their high schoolers’ attendance, timeliness, and academics regularly. The Synergy password issued to each parent allows that access every day. 

Excessive Absences

  1. Excessive absence is an academic detriment. Therefore, students that exceed 8 absences in a class may be removed from the course, and they will not receive credit. 
  2. If absences are beyond the student's control, such as extended or chronic illness, or family emergency, the student may remain in the class with a doctor's note or other appropriate documentation and administrative approval.

Tardiness

  1. Late arrival to class that does not exceed 10 minutes will be recorded as a tardy. Students who are more than 10 minutes late will generally be counted as absent. Tardies are recorded by the teacher. 
  2. Tardiness is disruptive to the learning process for the tardy student and for the class. 
  3. Beyond 3 tardies in 1 class is considered excessive. 
  4. Excessive tardies and/or other attendance-related infractions will result in a loss of school privileges. 

Students who are excessively tardy may expect the following:

  1. 4th, 5th, 6th tardies: detention (and parent communication)
  2. 7th tardy and beyond: Saturday school and a behavior contract in partnership with parent/guardian. 

Unexcused Absences

  1. Unexcused absences will result in the following consequences:
  2. 1st and 2nd absences: 1 detention, loss of school privileges, and parent/guardian communication. 
  3. 3rd and 4th absences: Saturday school, loss of school privileges, and parent/guardian communication. 
  4. 5th absence: a one-day in-school suspension and an administrative meeting with parent/guardian, teacher, and student. A behavior contract will be implemented. 
  5. Excessive absences may result in loss of credit for the course. 

There are no school-authorized skip days for any grade level, including seniors. Students who choose to declare such a day and not show up for classes will be considered unexcused. The consequences of unexcused absences will be imposed. 

Pre-Approved Absences

  1. Pre-approved absences for non-academic reasons while school is in session are strongly discouraged by the school. However, parents may request that the school approve a student’s absence provided the request is made at least three days prior to the date of the absence by use of a pre-approved absence form. 
  2. Pre-approved absences will be limited to a maximum of five days per school year. Families requesting more than five days must receive an administrative waiver. 
  3. The teachers may require the student to complete assessments and assignments prior to the pre-approved absences. In cases where the work is to be completed when the student returns, the teacher will establish a time frame for completion of the work. 
  4. It should be noted that the responsibility for making up missed work is solely that of the student and the family. 
  5. Pre-approved absences are not permitted during exams and are strongly discouraged during the last three weeks of each semester.

School-Related Absences

  1. Students must limit the number of school-related activities that will result in missed classes.
  2. Students have an option to decline participation in school-related activities that take them out of other classes if they feel that missing other classes will create an undue academic hardship.
  3. Teachers and administrators may assist students in limiting those activities if they result in excessive absenteeism or become detrimental to academic or class participation. 
  4. Students are responsible for all work missed during a school-related absence. The work missed may be due on the day of return.

Assembly and Chapel/Focus Time Attendance

Attendance is mandatory in chapel, community time, and focus time. Students are expected to sit with their small group leaders or classroom teachers in the rows assigned to that group.

Students who choose to skip chapel/assembly and/or focus time may expect the following consequences:

  1. First absence: 1 detention (parent communication)
  2. Second absence: 2 detentions and parent communication
  3. Third absence: Saturday school, communication with the parent/guardian, and possibly a behavior agreement.

Detention

  1. Detentions are 1 hour. They are served on Mondays and Wednesdays from 7:30 am — 8:30 am and Mondays and Wednesdays from 3:00 pm — 4:00 pm.
  2. When a detention is given, the student must serve the detention during the next available morning or afternoon time slot. 
  3. Missing detention will result in additional penalties including intervention Focus Time, Saturday school, and loss of school privileges. 
  4. Detention is mandatory. Students may have to miss athletic or other extracurricular practices and activities to attend detention. 
  5. Detention is a time for quiet work. There will be no sleeping or socializing during detention. Phones will be turned in at the start of each detention.

Intervention Focus

  1. Intervention focus will take place daily during lunch and focus time. 
  2. Students will be assigned to intervention focus when they miss multiple assignments or miss an assigned detention. 
  3. This will be a time for quiet work. 

Saturday School

  1. Saturday school will meet from 8:00 am — 11:00 am. Dates will be added as needed. 
  2. It is a time for quiet work. There will be no sleeping or socializing during detention. Phones will be turned in at the start of each Saturday school session. 
  3. Missing Saturday school will result in additional penalties. 
  4. Saturday school is mandatory. Students may have to miss other activities to attend Saturday school.

Extra-Curricular Events

In order to participate in any extracurricular practice or event, students must be in attendance at school for the majority of the day and finish the day at school. Exceptions include a doctor’s appointment with a doctor’s note, college visit, or funeral. Students should clear those absences with the attendance supervisor prior to missing school.

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